It’s Top 10 time again already!? Indeed it is, and quite a challenge this one is going to be, too. It wound up being quite a solid year, certainly better than average over the last decade (and that’s two above-average years in a row). As usual my tiers didn’t neatly align with a top ten or twenty, which makes things a lot harder.
A reminder – once more I’ll be revealing the #1 series via an “Anime of the Year” video on the LiA YouTube channel (a video which I will of course link here).
A Refresher on Eligibility:
I’m going by the same eligibility standard I used for the 2012-2022 lists – that is, shows that finished airing during the year or split-cours that finished in 2023 are eligible. Split-cour series which finish in 2024 are not eligible for this list, but series that ended this year and weren’t officially confirmed as split cour when they did are eligible. Shows that aired for the entire year (there weren’t any in consideration for me this year) are also eligible.
This means that in effect, the only shows not eligible for this list are the multi-cour series that began airing from Spring 2023 onwards and are still airing into Winter 2024, or true split cours that will finish in 2024.
As you know I always like to do a little contest, so here we go… The winner will be anyone that guesses my Top 10, in order. If no one does that, I’ll go with the closest guess. Guesses made by 2200 JST 12/23/23 will be eligible. Here’s the prize: same as last year, I’ll do a “Top 5” list or haiku on any anime theme or topic you choose. Dealer’s choice – you make the call. Please post your guesses in the comments below!
Honorable Mention – Hirogaru Sky! Precure
This is a first, an Honorable Mention for a show (honesty compels me to admit) I dropped. This is a tough category. I try not to just make it a cheat to slot a 21st show into the rankings – in my ideal at least, it should be a series that’s either ineligible or one I just wouldn’t normally blog. I could have picked something like Gamera: Rebirth (though it was perfectly eligible), but while the story was underrated the CGI was a big turn-off. Hirogaru Sky! Precure (still airing and thus ineligible for the list, by the way) even if I did see my interest in it play itself out, feels more in alignment with the spirit of the category.
I’d never watched a Precure series before this one, not being that much of a mahou shoujo fan to begin with. Frankly what made me curious here was the apoplectic reaction among the fanbase at the idea of a male precure. That turned out to be something of a tempest in a teapot, as Tsubasa (“Cure Wing”) was so inoffensive and blended into the vibe so seamlessly most fans seemingly couldn’t muster much indignation about his presence (and Murase Ayumu is obviously having fun with the role). I think this show does what it does quite well, actually – it’s just that what it does gets kind of repetitive, and was never really my bag in the first place. But I think it does have a niche in the mahou shoujo landscape, and I’m glad I got to know it.